Friday, July 6, 2018

[Botany • 2017] Taeniophyllum walkeri (Orchidaceae) • A New Species from north Queensland, Australia

Taeniophyllum walkeri  B.Gray
in Gray, 2017.

Taeniophyllum walkeri B.Gray is described, illustrated and compared to related taxa. A key to the Australian mainland species is expanded to include the new species. A line drawing and photographs are provided. The species is restricted to the western side of the McIlwraith Range on Cape York Peninsula and is so far only known from three collections.

Key Words: Orchidaceae, Taeniophyllum, Taeniophyllum walkeri, Australia flora, Queensland flora,
McIlwraith Range, new species, taxonomy.

Fig. 2. Mature flowering plant. Inflorescences showing open flower and a flower bud. (Ford 6462, BRI). Photo: B. Gray.

Taeniophyllum walkeri B.Gray sp.nov. 

Similar to T. oblongum Schltr. from New Guinea, but differs in having much larger floral bracts, a cleft apex to the labellum (versus entire) and rugose outer surfaces to the sepals (versus smooth). 

Typus: Queensland. Cook District: .... McIlwraith Range NE of Coen, 31 July 2015, A. Ford 6462 (holo: BRI).

Distribution and habitat: Taeniophyllum walkeri is endemic to central Cape York where it is known from a restricted area on the Leo Creek Mine road on the western side of the McIlwraith Range north east of Coen. All collections made have been growing on twigs and smaller branches of Larsenaikia ochreata (F.Muell.) Tirveng. in relatively open areas near rainforest. T. muelleri Lindl. ex Benth. was a very common orchid on the same host tree.

Etymology: The specific epithet honours entomologist James Walker who discovered this species while doing field work in the area.

Fig. 3. Close-up of open flower (Ford 6462, BRI). Photo B. Gray. 

Fig. 4. Fruiting plant (Gray BG9740 & Nowochatko, CNS). Photo: M. Nowochatko.

Bruce Gray. 2017. Taeniophyllum walkeri B.Gray (Orchidaceae), A New Species from north Queensland. Austrobaileya. 10(1); 65–69.  

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